MAR 19


The Texas Association of Sports Officials (TASO) has announced that it is continuing their program to recruit graduating seniors to officiating.  The “Students Today are Referees Tomorrow (STaRT) Program challenges every high school varsity coach to identify 3‑5 graduating seniors and encourage them to “stay in the game” by becoming an official.

“Texas currently has a shortage of officials and the shortage is growing,” according to Michael Fitch, Executive Director of TASO. “A population growth of about 500,000 each year translates to more new schools which requires more officials.  This is in addition to replacing the officials that we lose every year.”

TASO believes the best pool of recruits are the graduating high school seniors, many of which have played the game for 8‑10 years and would like to stay in the game.

How can you help as a coach?  Identify your graduating seniors that you believe would make good officials and encourage them to consider becoming an official.  For those that are interested, obtain their permission to submit their names and contact information to  The information we will need is name, the city of residence next fall, e‑mail and optionally their cell phone number.  TASO will not share that information with anyone other than our local chapters.

TASO will coordinate training being offered this spring with the closest chapter to his/her home and to the chapter closest to here they will be living at the start of the next season.

The officiating shortage is just not a TASO problem, it’s a Texas interscholastic concern for both public and private schools.  As a dedicated coach, why not be a part of the solution. Download and complete the STaRT LEAD form below and return it to